Final buzzer for 14-year Old South street hockey ritual
Forget Christmas cookies and open houses — one London neighbourhood has been celebrating the holiday season by clearing a road and busting out the hockey sticks.
But it’s an annual street hockey tradition on Devonshire Avenue in Wortley Village that’s coming to a close after 14 years.
“We have a lot of fun,” said Dianne Arnold, who lives on Devonshire and organizes the games. “It’s a fun neighbourhood tradition.”
She has group photos — happy hockey players gathered on a front lawn — from all 13 of the previous tournaments.
Dozens of friends gather for the annual faceoff, she said. There’s a separate game for the kids — so they don’t get “pummelled” by enthusiastic adult players, Arnold says — then the big kids take over.
“They do get kind of intense,” she admitted with a chuckle.
The annual battle started as a memorial for a neighbour who died of cancer. “He was a big hockey fan, his three boys are big hockey fans; they used to play hockey on the street,” Arnold said.
But now his family has moved to a new street. And Arnold said the community thought it was time to wrap up the street hockey tournament on Saturday.